Google Touts Early Data Around ‘Cloud Jobs API’

Google’s Cloud Jobs API launched November of last year to a decent amount of fanfare. Vendors like CareerBuilder, Dice, and Jibe were early adopters, as well as direct employer Johnson & Johnson.

“CareerBuilder will be able to layer our rich domain expertise over Google’s extensive search capabilities, opening the door to new efficiencies and opportunities for our business, clients and users,” said CareerBuilder CEO Matt Ferguson at the time. “Working with Google will give us the backend framework that we can leverage as we accelerate our transition into a global HR software as a service provider and build our ecosystem.”

Some of the API’s notable enhancements include the following:

  • Job-Specific Understanding – When candidates search for a job using plain English, the search results also incorporate jobs written in the industry or company-specific jargon that the jobseeker might not be familiar with. Synonyms and acronyms are expanded, and jobs are mapped to occupations to enable relevant indirect results. For example, searching for “BD” will also return jobs relevant to “business development”, “servers” will return waiters, “devops engineer” will also return SRE (Site Reliability Engineer).
  • Job Enrichment – The Jobs API automatically enriches job content with additional relevant information such as street address, employment type, and benefits.
  • Advanced Location Mapping – The Jobs API can interpret numerous forms of location: from street address to colloquial regions (Bay Area, Research Triangle) to precise geo-coordinates, enabling fine grained job filtering based on distance and commute times.

Until earlier this month, there haven’t been numbers behind the impact on using Google’s solution. However, an email from Google that I received this week touted metrics around Johnson & Johnson’s integration of the technology.

“To date, the Cloud Jobs API has connected over 4 million job seekers to jobs on the web,” said Google. “And we’re pleased to share how the Cloud Jobs API is delivering positive gains to Johnson & Johnson, working with their career site solutions provider Jibe.

“Since integrating Cloud Jobs API, Johnson & Johnson has seen an 18 percent increase in job applicants per search and a nearly 25 percent increase in clickthrough rate on its career site. This supports the notion that job seekers are more easily finding what they’re looking for.”

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Google also noted that its Wave II alpha invitations have been sent to companies looking to integrate the API. It’s also currently working on its Wave III short list to get more API integrations up and running.

The numbers sound good, but it’s by no means gospel at this point. Many things can go into increased job search traffic that have nothing to do with the search technology. For instance, there may have been more openings, or there may have been an event that triggered an increase in applications.

I’ll be interested to hear about similar success stories from CareerBuilder, Jibe, and other partners. Historical data will be the final judge as to how successful Cloud Jobs API will be.

Correction: The original post stated GE was an employer leveraging Cloud Jobs API. That’s not the case to date. Also, the bullet points have been updated to better reflect the features of Cloud Jobs API.

Joel Cheesman has over 20 years experience in the online recruitment space. He worked for both international and local job boards in the late ‘90s and early ‘00s. In 2005, Cheesman founded HRSEO, a search engine marketing company for HR, as well as launching an award-winning industry blog called Cheezhead. He has been featured in Fast Company and US News and World Report. He sold his company in 2009 to Jobing.com. He was employed by EmployeeScreenIQ, a background check company. He is the founder of Ratedly, an app that monitors anonymous employee reviews. He is married and the father of three children. He lives in Indianapolis.

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